Kostroma cattle are a Russian dairy breed, with excellent milking abilities and one capable of producing up to 8,000kgs of milk under the right conditions.
The breed originates in the Upper Volga region of Russia, having been first developed in the 20th century. The breed was first developed through crossbreeding breeds such as the Brown Swiss, Ayrshire and Allgau. Crossbreeding with Brown Swiss breeds continued throughout the years from 1920, with Ayrshire bulls also used, leading to the modern formation of the modern Kostroma breed.
But what are the key traits of the breed and would they worth the gamble?
A breed with excellent milking abilities, some Kostroma can produce up to 8,000kgs of milk, though this is only under intensive management systems. The herd within the Karavaevo state farm in Russia achieved 6,310 kgs per cow in 1940.
Generally, the average milk yield of a Kostroma cow varies from 3,900 to 5,000kgs, with milk containing a protein content from 3.3-3.6% and a fat content of 3.7-3.9%. In intensive management systems, the average milk yield can vary from 6,000 to 8,000kgs, though some Kostroma cattle have been reported to produce up to 10,000kgs, though these are an anomaly.
Not only are the breed hardy with a strong constitution, but they also live long, healthy lives and cows can produce milk for up to twenty years! The breed, which is light grey in colour and is a medium to large size, also have it’s uses in beef production, with calves holding value.
The average yearling steer generally weighs in between 450 to 500kgs, with a dressing percentage of 58 to 60 percent. The breed is docile in nature, with a calm temperament and is suited to all climates. There are currently no Kostroma cattle found in Ireland, though could this change in the coming years?
Main Picture - Ten Insider